Friday 29 April 2022

Developers to swoop on prime Broadbeach apartment development site through GV Property Group

Developers are set to swoop on a prime two block development site in the heart of the in-demand Broadbeach on the Gold Coast.

Property amalgamation specialists GV Property Group have managed to amalgamate the two blocks, some 12 owners, to create the 1,548 sqm site at 19-23 Anne Avenue. They have expressions of interest closing May 20.

GV Property Group agent Luke Reaby said the availability of parcels this size in the hub of Broadbeach are becoming few and far between

“We have been working on this amalgamation for the last 12 months and are extremely excited to see the response it deserves,” Reaby says.


The site is just 300 metres from Broadbeach’s Kurrawa Beach to the east. A tower would offer views over the Nerang River and Surfers Paradise CBD to the north.

To the west there would be direct views over the Cascade Gardens and views back down to the Casino and Broadbeach CBD to the South.

This pocket of Broadbeach is supported by some of the most successful developers such as Raptis, Little Projects, and Niecon, who have all had amazing sell-outs stories. Picking the right location is a top priority and this one is a no-brainer.”

Developers have been quick to snap up any available land in the thriving suburb with Raptis recently lodging plans for their Anne Avenue site.

They had Bates Smart create a 383-apartment tower at 5-9 Anne Avenue. Raptis has also recently cleared the site at 6-10 George Avenue to make way for a proposed 40-storey residential tower.

Little Projects sold-out Signature residences are currently under construction in the area, as is Bassar Construction Group’s inaugural Gold Coast project, the 39-level Infinity, which also recently sold out.

Morris Property Group kicked off the booming development back in 2021, completing Koko, which was inspired by the modern luxe of international boutique hotels.


Article source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Thursday 28 April 2022

‘Could stress your budget’: First-home buyers warned of hidden $11,000 sting

First home buyers who scrape into the property market on a low deposit could face almost $1000 extra in monthly mortgage repayments by the end of next year as interest rates rise.

First time buyers can purchase with a 5 per cent deposit and avoid lenders’ mortgage insurance under the federal government’s Home Guarantee Scheme.

With the recently announced price cap increases, a Sydney buyer will be able to purchase a $900,000 property with a $45,000 deposit, although in practice, to get an $855,000 loan the buyer would likely need to be a couple.

Mortgage repayments on a loan that size would be $3595 a month now, based on the current average variable interest rate of 2.98 per cent, Canstar modelling shows.

But if the cash rate rises in line with Westpac’s forecasts, the repayments would rise to $4513 by the end of 2023, an increase of $918 a month. If they held at that level, over a year the increase would total $11,016.

Someone who bought the same property with a 20 per cent deposit would face a slightly smaller, albeit still sizeable jump of $772.

Melbourne buyers will be able to look at $800,000 properties with a $40,000 deposit. Today’s repayments of $3196 a month would rise to $4012 by the end of next year, an increase of $816.

If that buyer had a 20 per cent deposit, their repayments would rise $687.

Canberra buyers on a low deposit face a jump in repayments of $765, Brisbane buyers face $714, and the gap is $612 for Adelaide, Perth, Hobart and Darwin.

Canstar group executive financial services Steve Mickenbecker said potential buyers thinking about whether to use the scheme should consider that it means taking out a bigger loan than if they had a 20 per cent deposit, and making larger repayments.

home buyers
Low interest rates have fuelled a property boom. CREDIT:JOE ARMAO

“Your loan’s [up to] $135,000 higher, so you’ve got to be able to repay that in the first instance,” he said.

“Interest rates are going to go up, so the impact of that’s bigger again … You’re up for a significantly higher repayment and that could stress your budget.”

Interest rates could rise as soon as May or June, economists expect, for the first time since 2010. More than a million people have taken out their first mortgage since then and never dealt with a rate hike.

AMP Capital chief economist Dr Shane Oliver said some borrowers are much better prepared than others, noting the contrast between those who have had more time to get ahead on their loan compared to newer buyers.

About 40 per cent of borrowers have used the last few years to make extra repayments because they already had a loan and are now well ahead, he said.

Another group of 25 to 30 per cent are set for a substantial increase in their repayments, and the rest are in between, he said.

Recent borrowers “may not be as well-prepared psychologically” for rate rises, he said.

“Most households will be able to withstand it but there’s a significant group of households with a mortgage who would see quite a significant increase in their payments and that group is more at risk.”

home buyers
Established borrowers have had more of a chance to get ahead on their repayments than new homeowners.CREDIT:PENNY STEPHENS

On the ground, mortgage brokers said prospective buyers are well aware of the looming rate rise, but are mostly focused on trying to secure a property in an expensive market.

“It’s not like there’s a panic, people are quite aware of it,” Mortgage Choice Blaxland, Penrith and Glenmore Park principal Rob Lees said.

“They just want to get into the market really. There is a little bit of concern, it’s not like it’s extreme – it’s the emotion of wanting to buy a property and get into the market is the dominant thing.”

He works through the cost of different-sized rate rises with clients so they can consider their potential future repayments. The bank regulator also changed its home lending rules late last year, so borrowers must be able to repay their loan if interest rates rise 3 percentage points, up from a previous buffer of 2.5 percentage points, a rule change that reduced the maximum amount some buyers could borrow by about 5 per cent.

Some existing borrowers have asked about refinancing, but Lees starts by ringing their current bank to ask for a better rate. He also advises borrowers to calculate how much their repayments could be if rates go up one or two percentage points.

“They just need to know what those figures are and think about how that’s going to impact their family budget – ideally even just to be starting to put that extra money aside probably isn’t a bad thing,” he said.

Melbourne mortgage broker Andrew Kostanski, of Andine Financial, said clients have been asking about rate rises and he has been having conversations about their buffer, but said many are not stretched to their limits.

“People aren’t too perturbed about it, people are just trying to get into a home,” he said

“They’re all just so delighted they can actually bid at an auction, and get something off the plan that has finally settled, that that’s the least of their concerns at the moment.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Why north Queensland’s luxury homes boast a distinct architectural style

Reinforced with storm-proof steel and sitting amid cool, chartreuse rainforests or next to sun-kissed beaches, prestige properties across Queensland’s tropical north burst with a rare architectural flavour born from a unique catalogue of geographical conditions.

Home to one of the nation’s harshest climates, it’s a place where cyclones can rip through the paradisical landscape that at times mimics a sweltering hot house. This breeds not just humidity, but also astonishing design ingenuity.

From breathtaking breezeways that cleverly complement the climate to creative concrete abodes that ooze natural beauty, high-end homes from Port Douglas down to the idyllic Whitsunday Islands often seem to emulate a living treehouse encased in rainforest.
Queensland’s high-end homes are built to endure its climate whilst also including luxury finishes. Photo: Supplied

That’s because those rare geographical conditions don’t just inspire the design, they dictate it, says REMAX Cairns director Ray Murphy.

“Because of our cyclones, everything has to be built to code, so there are a lot of steel frame homes … and there’s a lot of concrete,” he says.

“And if your house is in the rainforest you have to factor in termites. Then you need a pool – it’s compulsory up here.”

These compulsory prerequisites, he says, have led to some of the most innovative open-air living on show in Australia, alongside picture-perfect pools that seem to spill out into the lush greenery while capturing the coveted northerly breezes.

“A lot of people freak out about how our homes are built and about not having screens on every door,” Murphy says.

“But you need to really utilise the breeze so our designs include a lot of indoor-outdoor living.

“I’m selling a property at the moment [where] if you want to get from the kitchens to the bedroom you have to walk outside.”

While the style may baffle those unused to tropical conditions, it’s one that’s rained dozens of national awards down on some of the region’s most innovative abodes – including 5 Planchonella Close at Edge Hill, simply dubbed Planchonella.

The exquisite three-bedroom home is nestled in the rainforest just outside Cairns and continues to be one of the most architecturally remarkable Australian homes ever built.

It was created (and lived in) by Jesse Bennett of the eponymous architecture studio.

He famously used a curving concrete facade designed to increasingly integrate into the landscape over time, which contributed to the property being named Australian House of the Year back in 2015.

Lot ZIC Island View Drive on Hamilton Island boasts incredible views and has been built to last. Photo: Supplied

Equally innovative designs can be found mere metres back from the white-gold sands of Hamilton Island, where the need to build durable, luxury estates that withstand cyclones and salt has resulted in open-air houses more akin to resorts.

One such home – at Lot ZIC Island View Drive, Hamilton Island – recently hit the market for a cool $10 million.

It’s an eye-bulging retreat that brims with unique materials and 240-degree sunrise and sunset views.

Constructed with restored 120-year-old timber from Brisbane’s Thorney Bridge, alongside natural stone, the home’s foundation of pre-made steel was over-engineered to withstand even the most violent of storms, says Wayne Singleton, Whitsundays director of Queensland Sotheby’s International Realty.

“Even the glass was over-engineered. So when a cyclone five came by not one thing shook,” he says.

“But here it’s all about views and airflow … even where the barbecue is situated you can enjoy the sunset – and the sunsets are so vibrant here.”

It’s a reason why so many high-end homes are built on elevated blocks across the tropical north, Singleton says, and why much of the interior celebrates the unique exterior.

“It’s all about nice big decks and outside living,” he says.

“The pools here are always designed to capture that [sunrise and sunset] aspect. And this pool has got a beautiful wet edge … it’s quite special.”

Beyond the stunning aesthetics of the perennially popular open-plan style used across the island, designs such as that of Lot ZIC Island View made life in the far north supremely comfortable, says builder Aaron Hemsley, director at Coral Coast Building & Management.

“With most of the houses designed with breezeways, it just makes life bearable … in fact, you don’t even need air-conditioning,” he says.

“But we also tend to use materials that are less susceptible to rot such as cement sheeting, external timber frames that reduce that ongoing maintenance and, particularly in these buildings, natural stone tops alongside a lot of smart stain ranges.

“It’s a harsh environment here and you’re constantly covered in salt.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Tech Entrepreneur Disrupts With Shop-Top Development Proposal

The flames on the fryers at the Palm Beach Fish & Chips Shop, a roadside institution on Sydney’s northern beaches, flickered off months ago.

But tech rich-lister Robin Khuda is still feeling the heat.

The demolition crew has come and gone, levelling the site where locals along with movie stars, rock stars and sporting heroes had once placed their salt-sprinkled orders.

A development battle line—with a pristine view over Pittwater—has been drawn.

On one side is the wealthy founder of data centre operator AirTrunk who wants to build a shop-top residential development adjoining the landmark heritage-listed Barrenjoey House.

On the other side is a local community—much of it also cashed-up—fighting to protect the peninsula’s village vibe.

Khuda, who has been on a $120-million-plus property acquisition spree over the past couple of years, purchased the 1140sq m Barrenjoey Road site through his investment entity Asia Digital Investments for $6 million.

Since then, he has been seeking to amend the site’s existing development approval granted in 2014 for four apartments and three retail tenancies.

Last year, an application for modification of the development consent was lodged with the Northern Beaches Council for a three-level design with six apartments above retail.

But following community backlash and council feedback deeming it “unacceptable and inconsistent with the seaside village character” of the area it was withdrawn.

development proposal
▲ The former Palm Beach Fish & Chips Shop on Barrenjoey Road, which has been demolished to make way for the controversial shop-top residential development.

Design firm Rob Mills Architecture went back to the drawing board to address the concerns regarding the proposal’s architectural style, appearance and relationship to the adjoining heritage listed Barrenjoey House.

Subsequently, a new application for an alternative shop-top concept—to be constructed at an estimated cost of about $13.6 million—was recently filed.

It comprises a three-storey building with pitched rather than flat roof forms that according to the documents is “both sympathetic to its context and contemporary in its use of materials and forms in response to local climate and the seaside village character”.

The new scheme includes a publicly-accessible plaza and “deep and generously proportioned” colonnade providing weather-protected outdoor seating adjacent to the commercial tenancies on the ground level.

It is topped with five residences—one two-bedroom and two three-bedroom apartments on the first level, and two four-bedroom apartments on the second level.

development proposal
▲ Artist’s impression of the previous development proposal for the Barrenjoey Road site which was deemed “unacceptable and inconsistent with the seaside village character” of the area.

The new application concedes the upper-level roof eaves exceed the site’s 8.5m height blanket by as much as 2.99m in some parts and a height variation request has been submitted.

“We consider that such request is well-founded in that it facilitates the development of the site in a manner which provides far superior urban design, heritage conservation, residential amenity and landscape outcomes compared to the development approved,” the planning report said.

A submitted heritage impact statement noted the proposed new building was “similar in height and scale to Barrenjoey House” and although contemporary in character it “demonstrates respect for the key forms, architectural proportions and materiality” of its 99-year-old neighbour.

It concluded the proposed works would have “no impact on the ability to understand the significance of the nearby heritage listed items” and would support “the ongoing significance of the area as a neighbourhood precinct”.

Numerous submissions objecting to the new scheme already have been lodged by the local community.

They describe the proposal as a monstrosity, imposing, grossly out of character and, according to the owner of a property behind the site, even higher than the previous proposal.

“It is a bulky building that not only flaunts height restrictions but is of an ugly, pretentious post-modern design; a complete anachronism,” one of the objections said. “With heavy neo-classical porticos and and a pitched federation roofline it is not at all sympathetic to the site and the lifestyle of the area.”

But one of the submissions begged to differ describing it as “a beautiful asset to the already beautiful Palm Beach area”.

“We can’t keep living in the past and not let these beautifully designed buildings be built,” it added.

Khuda—who has amassed a $600 million fortune as a data centre entrepreneur—in recent times has been satisfying a newfound penchant for high-end property investment and development.

His property splurge has included a total of three holdings in Palm Beach for $25 million as well as a coastal retreat in Lennox Head for $7 million, an apartment in Crown Resorts’ Barangaroo tower for $10.7 million and a Mosman mansion for close to $20 million.

The AirTrunk chief executive has also acquired two old apartment blocks at Manly’s North Steyne for $18.2 million, which are earmarked for another luxury apartment development.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Wednesday 27 April 2022

‘Time is of the essence’: What home owners should do while interest rates are still low

The mortgage repayments of millions of home owners around the country could potentially rise within weeks if the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) starts increasing the cash rate target earlier than previously expected.

Rising inflation, low unemployment and a pick-up in wage growth mean economists and the big banks now expect that the RBA could begin raising rates from June this year.

It’s expected the RBA’s first hike will be 0.15 per cent to get the cash rate to 0.25 per cent, with further rises of 0.25 per cent increments following the historical pattern seen in previous rate-tightening cycles.

“Our view is that they’ll probably get rates to 1 per cent by the end of this year and push it up to 1.5 per cent next year,” says AMP Capital’s chief economist, Shane Oliver. “Then, if inflation comes off a little bit because of lessening supply constraints, they could pull rates back again in 2024.”

But while the official interest rate – and therefore variable interest rates – may rise sooner than previously forecast, there is still time for home owners to take advantage of current conditions.

Here are three things home owners can do while rates are still low.

1. Review your home loan

The cash rate is at a record low, and lenders are still offering attractive rates, so it’s the opportune time to check in on your mortgage, says Lianna Mills, senior home loan specialist at Domain Home Loans

“Time is of the essence,” she says. “Whether you’re on a fixed or variable interest rate, now is the time to review your mortgage.”

Making time now to speak to a broker or lender about whether your current interest rate and loan structure are still right for you could help ensure you’re in the best position before rates rise.

2. Enquire before your fixed term expires 

For borrowers on a fixed-rate home loan, it’s worth reaching out to your broker or lender at least four to six weeks before your fixed term expires to explore your upcoming options, says Ms Mills.

“You don’t have to wait for your fixed rate to expire to initiate an application or make an enquiry with a new lender,” she says.

Reviewing your fixed rate before it expires could help ensure you’re in a good position before rates rise. Photo: Greg Briggs

“There are no negative implications to reviewing your loan while your fixed rate is still in progress,” she says. “But, you may be negatively impacted if you wait to review your loan and in that time interest rates rise.”

Each month, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) board meets and sets the cash rate target, sometimes referred to as the “official” interest rate. The cash rate serves as a benchmark for home loan interest rates, which are normally a few percentage points higher. Lenders often adjust their variable interest rates based on movements of the cash rate, but aren’t obliged to do so.


3. Future-proof your home loan 

When reviewing your home loan it’s not only important to ensure it suits you now, but also that it will continue to meet your needs years into the future, Ms Mills says.

“It’s important to consider what your future circumstances might be,” she says. “For example, if you’re planning to sell your property within two years, fixing for four years won’t make sense.”

Borrowers with fixed-rate home loans may need to pay substantial break costs if they sell or refinance before the end of the fixed period, so it’s a good idea to plan ahead for how circumstances might change.

Anticipating your future property moves can help you choose a home loan that serves you well into the future. Photo: Stocksy

It’s also important to keep in mind that interest rates are expected to continue to rise over the course of the year. So even if the financial benefits of refinancing aren’t immediately obvious, reviewing your home loan now could help ensure you are in a better position in the future, Ms Mills says.

“People so often refinance to save money now,” she says. “But, a refinance is just as valuable if it can put you in a better position in six months’ or a year’s time.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Wave of Towers Planned for Gold Coast Beachfront Strip

A new era of high-rise development is dawning along a beachfront strip on Queensland’s Gold Coast with a string of tower projects planned, including an adults-only hotel.

Oceanfront urban renewal is under way with ageing and rundown buildings from the 1970s and 1980s making way for taller and more luxurious towers.

The surge of proposals follows a $150-million sand grab along the Northcliffe Terrace-Garfield Terrace stretch between Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach.

It also coincides with a development application filing frenzy sparked by looming planning scheme amendments effectively reducing density along the city’s established coastal strip.

One of the most recent proposals lodged with the Gold Coast City Council is for a 41-storey residential and adults-only hotel beachfront tower on a 2025sq m site at 27-35 Garfield Terrace.

It has been filed by KTQ Group, headed by billionaire Queensland coal baron Brian Flannery and his wife Peggy who have been quietly staking the sizeable claim atop the dunes in an almost $20-million property play.

Garfield Terrace
▲ Oceanfront urban renewal is under way along the Garfield Terrace beachfront strip.

The prime holding just down the road from the Northcliffe surf club includes the Kuleena apartment complex and two other buildings to the north.

According to the DA they will be replaced by a 157.5m tower comprising 60 residential apartments above 60 short-term accommodation rooms, which have been described by the developer as an “adults-only hotel” offering.

“The hotel is not the dominant use proposed within the development, as most of the development is set aside as multiple dwelling units … to ensure the intent of the zone is maintained,” the documents said.

The Flannery’s latest project follows the success at the southern end of the Gold Coast redeveloping the Kirra Beach Hotel site as well as the creation of the Elements resort on the former Club Med site on the outskirts of Byron Bay. 

To be called Seren, the Garfield Terrace tower has been jointly designed by Little Boat Projects and Bates Smart.

Its planned residential component includes 56 three-bedroom apartments, three full-floor four-bedroom apartments and a five-bedroom, two-storey penthouse.

In addition, it will provide a restaurant and bar on level one and day spa-gym on level eight, an entire floor dedicated to wellness for residents, guests and visitors.

The Flannery's KTQ Group is planning a 41-storey tower
▲ The Flannery’s KTQ Group is planning a 41-storey tower with 60 residential apartments above a 60-room “adults-only” hotel.

“The proposal design is driven by a highly contemporary, material rich design and green architecture, offering a sophisticated coastal style,” the filed documents said.

“The incorporation of these coastal elements and embedded greenery at the ground and podium level is in keeping with the established character of Surfers Paradise.”

Among the rising tide of developments along the booming beachfront strip prolific Sydney developer Iris Capital has lodged plans for a 38-storey apartment tower on a narrow 900sq m site at 73 Garfield Terrace.

Both the proposals lodged with the Gold Coast council for Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach are for sites spanning only 607sq m with 15m-wide frontages. 

Brisbane-based Frank Developments is behind the Mira Residences project at 61 Garfield Terrace, a planned 31-storey beachfront tower designed by Ferro Chow Architecture comprising 13 double-storey apartments and a four-storey penthouse with a private rooftop terrace.

Another Sydney developer, Xsite Group, has filed plans for a 26-storey oceanfront tower with 37 apartments for the 1970s Anglesea Court site at 9-11 Garfield Terrace.

And Cronulla-based Sammut Developments in partnership with Alceon has plans to deliver a $200-million, 35-storey tower with 49 apartments on the site of the ageing 10-storey Garfield on the Beach at 43 Garfield Terrace.

Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Homebuyers Warned as Builders Renegotiate Contracts

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission has warned homebuyers to seek legal advice before agreeing to make payments that fall outside of the terms of fixed price contracts.

QBCC’s warning comes as builders and construction firms face escalating construction and labour costs and delays.

Earlier this week, it was revealed Oracle Homes was asking homebuyers for up to $122,000 for price variations due to cost blowouts.

Master Builders Australia acting chief executive Paul Bidwell said the ongoing war in the Ukraine was also affecting supplies.

“We’ve just seen, as a result of the Ukrainian conflict, the federal government impose tariffs on goods coming out of that region and the immediate impact has been a 25 per cent increase on engineered wood products,” Bidwell said.

“So that will add $6000 to $11,000 depending on how big the house is.

“Who would have figured that that would have happened, two months ago?”

After high-profile builders Probuild and Condev declared insolvency, a number of smaller subcontractors, builders and construction firms are barely managing to stay afloat.

“What Oracle is going through is no different to what any other builder in Australia is going through,” Bidwell said.

“They have signed a fixed price contract and in the period of that contract, the cost of materials and labour has gone up astronomically.”

Cost variations can be accounted for via rise and fall or cost escalation clauses in contracts but when and how these can be introduced into contracts varies from state to state.

With a fixed price contract the homebuyer is not required to pay any more than what was initially agreed to in the contract but it does not prevent the buyer from contacting the homebuyer to negotiate.

Bidwell said it was key to keep the homebuyer informed and to try to negotiate.

“There is nothing to stop the builder going to their clients and saying ‘here is the problem I have got. I can’t finish it by this time, it’s going to cost more, here are my invoices so you can see the costs’,” Bidwell said.

“It’s all about managing relationships.

“The builder has to manage the relationship with the client so there are no surprises.”

homebuyers 1
▲ Metricon is renegotiating some contracts.

Metricon’s chief executive Mariao Biasin recently announced that it was renegotiating contracts with some clients.

“Metricon is committed to fulfilling every valid contract in which a fixed price has been agreed,” Biasin said.

Last financial year, Oracle Homes built 112 houses worth $36.6 million, a drop of nearly two thirds compared to the previous financial year when it built 318 houses worth more than $90 million.

It has a category 6 licence allowing it to build up to $240-million worth of housing per year.

Bidwell said there seemed to be no short-term solutions.

“We do need to do more planting with forestry and more domestic production and manufacturing,” Bidwell said.

“But it won’t fix the problem in the short term.

“It’s very difficult—there’s not much that can be done.”

Monash University Professor Gerber told media this week that if a builder went bankrupt it would affect every one.

“When things start to go wrong for the builder, it really has a domino effect because all the people they are responsible for paying — their workers, their suppliers, their tradies — they all suffer and can’t be paid,” Gerber said.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Tuesday 26 April 2022

If you care about Australia’s future, care about declining home ownership

The most thought-provoking contribution I’ve heard so far in this utterly dumbed-down election campaign is from barrister Gray Connolly, saying the big issue we should be debating is housing and intergenerational wealth.

Connolly was speaking as a self-proclaimed Red Tory, on ABC Radio National’s Religion and Ethics Report. Red Tories, he says, are people on the political Right who have a more traditional view of what we’re trying to achieve. They are true conservatives, trying to conserve the institutions and practices that have given us the way of life we value.

Red Tories believe in communitarianism – much more about “we” than “me”. They highlight the virtues of home and family. They emphasise the boring virtues, like duty, perseverance and loyalty, not just people’s rights.

That so few Australians under 40 have any form of home ownership or wealth of any kind is a ticking timebomb socially, Connolly says. It’s this that could split the country demographically.

“I cannot believe how little work either side of politics has done on the housing issue. It’s an absolute disgrace that the Coalition, on the Right of politics, for whom home ownership is usually something very important, has done so little to promote home ownership among young people.

“You cannot have a stable country where so many people do not have security in their homes, do not have security in their work, don’t feel they’re getting ahead, and do not feel they have a stake in society that causes them to want to preserve it.

“I cannot believe that so many people on the Right of politics do not get this,” he says.

How do the economic policies of recent decades adversely affect traditional conservative values?

“For the better part of 20 years, nothing has been done other than pour fuel on the housing-price fire,” he says. This has continued even to the point of not looking after renters, not looking after people with insecure work.

home ownership
The fact that so few Australians under 40 have any form of home ownership or wealth of any kind is a ticking timebomb socially, Gray Connolly says.CREDIT:PETER RAE 

It has delayed coupling and family formation for most people. “If you don’t have secure work, chances are you’re not going to form a family because chances are you cannot afford a home.”

If you have housing that is so expensive, then you have young people moving away from where their parents are. You have the family bond dissolve, he says.

“If you are a conservative, you want to conserve [that bond].” You want adult children to be able to look after their ageing parents. You want grown-up children to be able to turn to their parents for childcare. This, he says, is the natural order of society.

But because “the market” and government policy mean we don’t “prioritise residential housing for actual residence, but for investment, you have the absolute social disaster where these bonds are being split apart.”

Does it surprise you to hear anyone on the Right accepting that insecure work is a major social problem? Though the Red Tory label is a recent British invention, Connolly traces its origins back to the mid-19th century and Benjamin Disraeli.

Then, then the Conservatives saw the trade union movement as a necessary counterbalance to the “viciousness and brutality of Manchester liberalism,” Connolly says. (Manchester would have been seen as centre of the dark satanic mills.)

Connolly says Red Tories accept the role of the state as protector of the nation, but also of the family and the family structure. They see the state as being useful for achieving bigger projects for the national good.

Phillip Blond, instigator of Britain’s Red Tory revival, says the market has a tendency to devour its host society. Connolly says this is a very dangerous tendency and that’s where the state comes in.

Corporations are creatures of statute, and what statutes make they can unmake and can regulate, he says. So rather than fearing the state is too powerful, “I am much more scared of the state that’s too reluctant to bring corporations to heel”.

A corporation has no special rights in society any more than any other group does. The state is meant to protect the rights that people need to be protected. We should be conserving society and the community and serving the weakest and the hurt, he concludes.

I think there’s much sense in what Connolly says, and not just about the high social price we’ll pay for making too many jobs insecure and homes too hard for too many young people to afford. We’ll damage the Australian way of life.

The economy is all of us. It belongs to all of us, not just a few big corporations. It must be the servant of our society. Governments’ job is to ensure the economy improves our way of life and doesn’t diminish it.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Monday 25 April 2022

World’s Tallest Timber Tower Planned for Perth

The tallest timber building in the world will rise in Perth, if approved, after a $350-million development application was lodged by Melbourne’s Grange Development.

The developer has submitted plans with the City of South Perth for a 50-storey hybrid timber tower comprising 245 apartments at 6 Charles Street.

At a height of almost 183 metres, the development, to be known as C6, will lay claim to be the tallest timber building in the world, outreaching Atlassian’s approved skyscraper in Sydney’s Tech Central precinct by three metres.

The tower will offer apartments in one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom configurations and offer 18sq m of communal space per apartment.

Grange Development managing director James Dibble said that the rapidly shifting climate was the main driver behind the carbon-negative building.

“The built environment is one of the three major drivers of catastrophic climate change, alongside transport and agriculture,” Dibble said.

“With promising technological advances in both the transport and agriculture industries now working towards drastically reducing global carbon footprints, the property industry is lagging dangerously behind.”

The building will also be topped with a 500sq m edible garden, dining and entertainment space, and 1600sq m of communal wellness amenity.

Designed by architecture firm Elenberg Fraser, the tower will be built from cross-laminated timber (CLT), and glue-laminated timber, or glulam.

The innovative materials have the structural strength of traditional methods using concrete and steel.

“Timber, as a building material has been around for centuries, but only recently has mass timber construction and fabrication methods, made it a viable option en masse,” Dibble said.

“[The proposal] represents the future of what is possible, except we will deliver it now.”

Buildings made from engineered timber have a significantly lower carbon footprint than other buildings during construction and subsequent operation.

Construction of the building’s core will sequester over 10.5 million
kilograms of carbon dioxide compared to a traditional concrete structure of a similar scale.

Timber Tower
▲ The public realm proposal is part paddock-to-plate urban farm and part immersive education hub. Image: Elenberg Fraser 

According to Grange, all the necessary timber, 7400 cubic metres, required to build the apartment floors, columns and beams will be able to be regrown from just 580 seeds.

Supporting the building’s carbon negative status will be an embedded power network harnessed through solar and wind technologies, along with on-site food production, waste management and biophilic vertical landscapes.

The building will also provide its on-site energy production to residents to allow for a complete electric vehicle solution that will totally remove the need for fossil fuel-powered cars.

Grange has a current portfolio of circa 7000 dwellings across land, medium-density and high-density worth a total gross realisation value in excess of $2.5 billion.

Its latest project in Perth will be one of the most significant for timber—the use of which in office buildings, apartments towers and other facilities is gaining ground across the country.

According to the latest IPCC report, keeping global warming to less than 1.5 per cent is increasingly unlikely and that a range of between 2 and 3 per cent is most probable.

Thousands of scientists and government reviewers have agreed that limiting global temperature rise to no more than 1.5°C is required to avoid the worst climate impacts and maintain a livable climate.

Dibble said Grange would now be committed to an open source sharing of the project’s research, design and construction documentation, to encourage other developers to incorporate, evolve and further progress the building’s methodology across other projects.

“Steel and concrete are some of the most energy-dense materials in the world to produce and at the moment the industry relies on it,” Dibble said.

“If we can accelerate a paradigm shift into the use of more renewable building materials such as mass timber in a hybrid nature and see even 10, 15 or 20 per cent of future projects use mass timber in their construction in the next few years, we will have succeeded.

“At the moment that figure is almost zero. If nothing changes, nothing changes.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Boomers a ‘Force of Change’ in Retirement Property Market

As teenagers they invented pop culture and now—much older, collectively wealthier and arguably wiser—they are defining a new age group and re-inventing retirement living.

Millenials may have surpassed them in numbers but baby boomers are still having significant influence on world economies and trends—not least in the property market.

“The baby boomers are coming through and have become a force for change in the seniors’ market,” said Cameron Kirby, managing director of Kirby Consulting Group, a retirement and aged care specialist.

“The more progressive operators are definitely getting their ducks in a line.

“And there’s a lot of developers interested in dipping their toes in the market for the first time, some of them with more than 30 years’ experience in the development industry, because they can see there is huge opportunity.

“[But] many developers that want to enter into this space are probably a bit reticent because they’re worried about the complexity of it, they’re worried about the unknowns.

“The opportunities, however, far outweigh any of their concerns.

“And if you’re offering what the market wants, you’re going to be successful.”

Kirby will be a speaker at The Urban Developer Developing For An Ageing Demographic vSummit on April 28.

“The sector is continuously changing,” he said.

“You’ve got land lease communities and over-55 developments that have been moving into the traditional retirement village space.

“And, at the moment, there’s a lot of talk about integrated care in retirement living with a greater weighting on having more retirement villages and less aged care.”

Last year, a survey by benchmarking firm StewartBrown showed 58 per cent of aged care homes were operating at a loss, up from 55 per cent the previous financial year, and 32 per cent made a cash loss.

“Aged care has got some major challenges … but in the meantime there’s also the baby boomers coming through,” Kirby said.

“What I’ve seen over the last 10 years is a bit of a slide where low-care people that used to go into aged care are more likely to go into retirement villages and, equally, people that used to go into more traditional retirement villages are now probably more interested in moving into land lease communities and over-55s concepts.

“Land lease communities are growing very fast and are hugely attractive, there’s no doubt about that … but retirement villages have upped the ante enormously as well, they tend to offer much more wellness and are moving more towards the care side of things.

“Certainly, operators who are offering care in retirement villages are going from strength to strength.

“There’s an increasing amount of quality retirement villages with hotel and resort-style living and state-of-the-art amenities coming online. Pools, gyms, spas, saunas, cinemas, you name it they’ve got it. 

“But those retirement living operators that have a full continuum of care solution that’s what the market is demanding … [the boomers] know they’re going to need some support down the line so they’re planning for their future.

“It really doesn’t matter, however, whether you’re doing aged care, retirement, over-55s or land lease community … because demand is outstripping supply. There is a market for all of those and they attract very different types of buyers.”

Kirby said given Australia’s ageing demographic, the seniors and retirement market was a “much more defensive proposition” for developers.

“Just as healthcare is a defensive stock on the stock market, I think seniors living is a much more defensive play in the property sector,” he said.

“It tends to be more needs driven than what a straight-out residential property play would be.

“And so, I think if we are going to be headed towards a softer property market this is an area that can really shine because seniors will still have the wealth and will still want to move and look at downsizing opportunities.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Houses still in high demand, apartment prices lag

The price growth of apartments continues to lag rocketing house prices in many suburbs across Sydney and Melbourne, with the trend showing little signs of abating.

The widening price gap between houses and units is a long-term trend driven by land scarcity in our biggest cities, with the difference tending to be widest between houses and high-rise apartments.

While house prices in Sydney’s North Ryde soared 29 per cent in the year ended March 31, unit prices in the suburb grew by a mere 6 per cent. Similarly, prices in Homebush grew 29 per cent, compared to unit price growth of just 7 per cent.

In Sydney’s Pennant Hills, house prices grew 24 per cent, while unit prices were flat, figures from CoreLogic show.

It is the same story in many parts of Melbourne, with Essendon North house prices growing by 19 per cent over the same period, while apartment prices fell by almost 1 per cent.

Houses in Melbourne’s Canterbury saw their prices jump more than 14 per cent, while units dipped 4 per cent. In inner-city Hawthorn East, houses were up 9.6 per cent, compared to a 6 per cent fall in unit prices.

Earlier analysis by CoreLogic showed more expensive property markets, particularly those close to CBDs and in areas where there are high numbers of units relative to houses, tend to have the biggest price gaps.

Eliza Owen, head of research at CoreLogic, says one of the reasons for the relative recent poor price performance of unit markets is COVID-19 related travel restrictions, including the closure of Australia’s international borders.

Demand for investment units in urbanised centres likely fell because of their high exposure to migrants and international students.

During the height of the pandemic, many units were empty, particularly in inner Melbourne.

The re-opening of international borders is seeing arrivals from overseas rising quickly, which should help to support the prices of units in both Sydney and Melbourne, she says.

However, Owen says one area of concern remains the prospect of higher mortgage interest rates, with prices of investment units more sensitive to rate movements than houses.

Many analysts expect the Reserve Bank of Australia to start increasing official interest rates this year, possible as early as June, with lenders expected to pass on any hikes in their variable rate mortgages.

Following two years of surging property prices, the big gains made over the past year appear to be over.

Sydney house prices were 0.1 per cent lower in March after being flat in February. Unit prices were 0.5 per cent lower in March and 0.3 per cent lower in February.

In Melbourne, house prices down 0.2 per cent lower in March, following flat prices February. Unit prices were 0.2 per cent higher in March and 0.1 per cent higher in February. However, those small gains came after big falls in inner-city unit property values during COVID-19 restrictions.

Coming off the back of strong annual growth, falling affordability continues to be a key factor affecting property market conditions.

A surge in the cost of living and rising rents is restricting the ability of prospective homeowners to save and borrow.

In last month’s federal budget, the government expanded the number of places available in its low-deposit scheme.

The program allows first-home buyers, and others, to buy new or existing dwellings with a deposit of only 5 per cent, instead of the usual 20 per cent that is needed to avoid paying expensive lenders’ mortgage insurance.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Glitter Strip Towers May ‘Fail to Materialise

Tower projects could fail to materialise in Gold Coast’s overcooked apartment market, but one developer says strong demand for smaller luxury apartment projects will shore up its half-a-billion dollars in commitments on the Glitter Strip.

Mosaic Property Group is banking on the ongoing success of the Coast, lodging plans for a 29-storey apartment tower at Broadbeach—its sixth project launched in the past four years.

It takes the south-east Queensland developer’s commitments to almost $500 million in the Gold Coast market, with a solid leads book of buyers waitlisted for sister projects Dawn and Bela.

Stock on the Gold Coast market is at an all-time low in 2022 as apartment prices continue to climb. A two-bedroom apartment is now going for an average of $660,415, chalking up a 32 per cent increase during the past 12 months. More property changed hands on the Gold Coast last year than in its history.

And while many developers are scrambling to file development applications ahead of proposed town planning changes, Mosaic chief operating officer Marina Vit believes many of the luxury projects will “fail to materialise”.

She says buyers are becoming more wary of developers who do not have a proven track record of delivering in the Gold Coast’s infamous boom-bust market cycles.

“We believe the Gold Coast apartment market will soften from the highs seen during the past 12 months in terms of volume of luxury sales,” Vit says.

“We also believe that many of the projects mooted to be delivered from Surfers Paradise through to Rainbow Beach over this next two years will fail to materialise. This will in turn keep stock levels much tighter than many are anticipating.

“It will be the developments that can meet the market and deliver against their increasingly specific and evolving needs and wants, as well as reputation, financial strength and delivery capability, that will be most successful … the market trusts that we will deliver what we promise based on our track record.”

Vit says Mosaic is committed to the Gold Coast apartment market with a bank of buyers lining up for its next development at Surf Parade in Broadbeach.

“Even now, we have a substantial list of buyers who have been waiting for us to deliver another development of such calibre in this part of the Coast.

“Buyers are increasingly wary about who they choose to buy from given the considerable ongoing delivery risk concerns with developers that don’t have a long track record of delivering projects through various market cycles.”

▲ Mosaic’s Dawn at Mermaid Beach on Queensland’s Gold Coast. 

“There is strong demand for luxury projects of less than 100 apartments from reputable developers with a strong track record. Both Bela and Dawn sold out in record time, with a long waitlist of buyers.

“This is an exceptional, rare site—the best non-direct beachfront site in the area in our opinion, with uninterrupted ocean views to the north-east and south-east over Nikiforides Family Park.”

It’s the second time Mosaic has teamed up with Plus Architecture after collaborating to deliver Dawn at Mermaid Beach.

The 29-storey tower proposed for the 1488sq m site at 146-148 Surf Parade will comprise a total of 96 apartments. Vit says the apartment floorplates will be varied to accommodate different demographics of owner-occupiers.

“We are focused on a highly considered design that will stand the test of time and is respectful to the local context,” Vit says.

“Residences are spacious and highly functional. And of course, there are an outstanding level of exclusive lifestyle amenities on offer within the building, in addition to on-site concierge services.

“We are also continuing to evolve and hone our approach to sustainability across all of our developments. We will be implementing a range of meaningful and measurable initiatives in the design and ongoing maintenance of the building and the homes within.”

It follows a slew of development applications Mosaic has filed across Brisbane and the Gold Coast recently, including an 81-apartment tower in East Brisbane.

There is just three months of apartment supply on the Gold Coast and pent-up demand for apartments on the Gold Coast continues to grow. More than 2500 apartments are expected to come online in the first half of this year according to Urbis’ apartment market research, but the city needs about 6000 new dwellings each year to meet demand.

“If you simply look at projected population growth and housing supply, we are at critically low levels right across south-east Queensland, so the demand will continue as people need homes,” Vit says.

“We have invested just under half-a-billion dollars across six launches within four years. This demonstrates how committed and passionate we are about the region’s opportunity. And we will continue to do so, given the confidence we maintain in this market’s future.”

But as construction costs escalate and the high-profile collapse of builders continues to plague the development industry, uncertainty will likely linger over projects in the notoriously volatile Gold Coast market.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

RetireAustralia’s $40m Gold Coast Project Approved

RetireAustralia’s plans for the $40-million third stage of its The Verge project on the Gold Coast have been approved.

The stage will include 62 independent living units as well as a care hub with 10 to 12 beds.

The O’Neill Architecture-designed project at Burleigh Heads is RetireAustralia’s 28th project nationally.

The first stage of the project comprised 40 independent living units while the under-construction second stage of 66 units is is scheduled for completion early next year.

The care hub will provide 24-7 support for the residents with Registered Nurse oversight and options for pallative care.

RetireAustralia’s chief executive Brett Robinson said it was important that people were able to age in place and live as much of their life in the same environment while being able to do what they wanted.

“They can live their life how they wish and receive the care they need in their home,” Robinson said.

“And we can provide the support they need if they have to step into a high-acuity environment without them needing to leave the community.”

RetireAustralia has more than 5500 residents and 6000 staff and a pipeline of more projects— it owns, develops and operates all of its projects and leases units to residents.

RetireAustralia has three projects currently under construction—a 92 independent living unit project at Tarragindi in Brisbane, and the final stages for Forresters Beach and The Rise at Woodglen, both on the Central Coast.

The second stage of The Rise has completely sold out with 24 independent living units and 34 under construction in the third stage.

The Forresters Beach Villas project will have 22 independent living units across its seventh and eighth stages.

The company also has several projects in the planning assessment phase including amended plans for the Tarragal Glen Manor project, also on the Central Coast.

It was initially proposed to comprise 54 assisted-care homes in a four-storey building on 110 Karalta Road site in Erina.

The project was approved in 2019 but after assessing market demand in the area for assisted care units, RetireAustralia opted to modify the proposal.

The new proposal comprises 42 self-care apartments for the site and a mix of 33 two-bedroom units and nine three-bedroom units with 14 units per floor on three of the four floors.

The ground floor will have amenities and 38 car parking spaces.

RetireAustralia is also working on a masterplanned community with vertical living units and a care hub in conjunction with EDQ at the Parkside Yeronga project.

Other projects include the Fancutts project in Lutwyche in Brisbane which will have more than 200 independent living units and a care hub, and a project in Land Cove, Sydney with more than 100 independent living units.

The first stage of the Glengara Care project in NSW is now complete and selling.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Why Brisbane apartments are set to see significant price growth: Colliers International Australia

The gap between the median house price and the median apartment price is a staggering 49 per cent, the greatest differential Brisbane has seen in two decades.

As Brisbane’s median house price skyrockets, the gap to the median apartment price widens, but it’s set to be short-lived with Colliers research showing the apartment market tipped is for a dramatic price increase.

Brisbane’s median house price increased by 10.7 per cent to $890,000 in the March quarter, according to research by Colliers.

The gap between the median house price and the median apartment price is at 49 per cent, the greatest differential Brisbane has seen in two decades.

However, Colliers Director Residential Queensland Andrew Roubicek believes the city is in for a significant price increase in the apartment market as we move into the second half of 2022, with compounding pressures on the construction sector forcing developers of new stock to lift prices.

The Fernery
The Fernery
47 Conavalla Street, Ferny Grove QLD 4055

“Working closely with developers, builders and architects as part of the project marketing arm of Colliers, and selling more than 5,000 apartments annually, we have seen first-hand the impact of labour and material shortages,” Roubicek said.

“Costs are rising by up to 30 per cent, and recent floods and COVID-induced issues are intensifying the problem and causing significant delays on construction timeframes.”

The impact of cost increases as a result of compounding environmental factors has had a dramatic impact on the construction sector, with several builders entering voluntary administration of falling into receivership.

However, Roubicek said the impacts of the cost increases and external pressures had a far wider reaching implications than the construction sector alone.

“There have been several examples of new developments achieving presale requirements of around 80 per cent, only to have developers refund deposits and tear up contracts because building costs have escalated to a point that the development is financially unviable,” he said.

“It’s left homebuyers utterly upset and disgruntled, particularly in what has become such a competitive market.

“As a consequence, developers who are looking to acquire new development sites are forced to increase their projected sale prices by around 20 per cent in their feasibilities. Just 18 months ago a two-bedroom apartment in Brisbane might have sold off the plan for $9,000 per square metre.

“But, to build that apartment today the developer would need to achieve a sale price of $11,000 per square metre for the project to stack up. That’s a 20 per cent price increase passed directly onto buyers,” he added.

160 Macquarie
160 Macquarie
160 Macquarie Street, St Lucia QLD 4067

Roubicek said the economic impact of interest rate increases would further impact on housing affordability, forcing buyers back into the apartment market.

“Buyers may see better value in the established apartment market in the short-term, as opposed to buying new off the plan. However, this will be a short-lived alternative as supply dries up and investors stake advantage of rental vacancy rates.

“We expect surge in demand from investors as the rental vacancy rates continue to fall to less than one per cent and rental yields approach five per cent. This increase in demand will have a significant impact on the second hand apartment pushing up prices reflecting the price of a new apartment.”



Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

Friday 22 April 2022

Brisbane house prices leave units in the dust

The gap between house and apartment prices in Brisbane is now the widest in at least two decades, but is set to shrink over the next 12 months as housing affordability bites and buyers choose cheaper options, Colliers says.

Colliers residential director Queensland, Andrew Roubicek, said the price difference between houses and apartments in Brisbane has reached 45 per cent compared with an average of around 20 per cent between 2003 and 2015.

Brisbane house prices further escalated with the onset on COVID-19 when people placed a higher value on privacy with interstate migration to the Sunshine State also propelling Queensland’s property market.

Property data company CoreLogic estimates that Brisbane house prices increased 32 per cent in the year ended March 31 compared with 15 per cent growth for units over the same period.

CoreLogic said house price growth is slowing faster than units and Mr Roubicek predicted that Brisbane apartment values will rise by “at least” another 15 per cent in the next 12 months.

Mr Roubicek said rising construction costs have hit the new apartment market hard and that comparable established stock costs about 25 per cent less.

“There have been several examples of new developments achieving pre-sale [targets] only to have developers refund deposits and tear up contracts because building costs escalated to a point where it was financially unviable,” he said.

“As a consequence, developers who are looking to acquire new development sites are forced to increase their projected sales prices by around 20 per cent.

“Just 18 months ago a two-bedroom apartment in Brisbane might have sold off the plan for $9000 per square metre.

“But to build that apartment today the developer would need to achieve a sale price of $11,000 per square metre for the project to stack up.”

He said as result new stock is selling slower than established units, a trend that will play out through the rest of this year.

“The market is coming to terms with those newer prices and are seeing in the short-term better value for money in the established unit market.”

He said it is a similar scenario to when GST was introduced in 2000.

“When GST came into the market overnight the cost of housing went up 10 per cent and put more demand into the established market, where the prices of stock grew and the difference between new and second hand became narrower.”

Mr Roubicek said he believed the record price gap between houses and apartments will contract through the year.

“If you believe in history, if you believe in charts, and take a long-term view you would have to think that gap is going to narrow because everyone’s talking about affordability, everyone’s talking about interest rate movements,” he said.

“Natural forces will push what would have been a buyer of a detached home back into the unit market because of affordability.”


Article Source:


from Queensland Property Investor

Charter Hall raising $75m property fund

Charter Hall’s hit the fund-raising trail to raise $75 million for its second fund in the Wholesale Property Series (WPS).

The WPS is a fund-of-fund targeted at high-net-worth types that invest in a mixed bag of Charter Hall’s commercial property assets.

The firm raised its first iteration two years ago, bringing in $278 million and returning 19.1 per cent on an annualised basis since then.

It began mailing out detailed information memorandums for WPS2 (official name: Charter Hall Wholesale Property Series No.2) this month with an initial $75 million target.

But the fundraising period would run for two years, making it likely the end size would match its older siblings’.

The fund is closed-ended with a seven-year term, with realisations to start from the fourth year. That’s a long lock-in commitment and potential investors were reminded of the rewards of patience; the fund is targeting total returns of 8 to 9 per cent with quarterly distributions.

Office and industrials (including logistics) were top of the list for allocations at 20 to 50 per cent of the portfolio each, followed by smaller allocations to long-WALE (10 to 40 per cent), social infrastructure (up to 30 per cent) and listed REITs (up to 15 per cent).

Charter Hall’s divvying up the initial $75 million across five of its funds, where the WPS2 would be either the institutional pooled investor or an institutional partner depending on the fund structure.

That’s 210 properties with 98.6 per cent occupancy and Telstra, David Jones, Bunnings, Macquarie and Aldi among the largest tenants, potential investors were told.

Charter Hall’s grown from $500 million in 2004 to $79.5 billion in group fund under management at December end. The wholesale segment has been a big part of its growth and accounted for $38.5 billion of the $61.3 billion it has in property.


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

The latest rental report provides good news for investors but a blow to tenants

The latest Domain Rental Report has revealed that prices have hit a record high throughout Australia, with the strongest annual growth in 13 years.

A few days before this announcement, Stuart Andrews was given notice to leave his family’s rented home of the last four years.

He was bewildered. But when he was told it was back on the market at a rent nearly 15 per cent higher, he finally understood.

“I’m still at a loss for words, though,” said Stuart, 59, who runs his own day spa business with his wife Emi, 55, in Brisbane, a city that has seen one of Australia’s steepest annual house rent increases, at 14.9 per cent over the last year. “We can’t afford to buy, but now we’re being forced to move out and face all that dislocation.

“It’s just a really tough market at the moment to find anything else. For every rental property inspection we attend, at least 10 to 20 others are applying for the same. And our situation isn’t unique. The stellar rise in property prices, compounded by the influx of families fleeing from high-cost housing in NSW and Victoria, is making it worse.”

With its new record high of $500 a week, Brisbane is far from being the only city where tenants are hurting, too. The report for the March quarter of 2022 reveals house rents have surged even more strongly in Canberra at 16.7 per cent to what is now the highest national weekly median rent of $700.

House rents meanwhile in Perth have jumped 11.6 per cent to $480 a week, in Darwin 10.9 per cent to $610, in Sydney 9.1 per cent to $600, in Hobart 8.3 per cent to $520, in Melbourne 3.4 per cent to $450 and in Adelaide 9.4 per cent to $465.

Unit rents aren’t offering much solace, either. The highest rise of those was in Darwin, up by 16.3 per cent to $500 a week, while Adelaide was up 8.6 per cent to $380, Perth 8.1 per cent to $400, Canberra 8 per cent to $540, Brisbane 7.5 per cent to $430, Hobart 7.1 per cent to $450, Sydney 6.4 per cent to $500 and Melbourne 4 per cent to $390.


Domain chief of research and economics Dr Nicola Powell said that although quarterly growth in house rents has slowed, it’s still shattering records, while unit rents have doubled.

“This really brings the focus on housing affordability front and centre,” she said. “We tend to talk about this around purchasing, but it’s about rents as well. How can people save for a deposit on their first home when they’re paying such high rent, the cost of living rises, and inflation goes up?

“We’ve seen such strong growth even in markets when international borders have been closed. It’s particularly tough in Brisbane with Queensland seeing the strongest rate of population growth, with people coming from Victoria and NSW, as well as the people displaced by the floods having to enter the rental market.”

While the dramatic rent increases are good news for investors, they’re too often proving disastrous for tenants, cleaving a wider gulf in Australia between the haves – who own property – and the have-nots, who are forced to fork out for the higher rents.

“This is the worst point in the housing crisis,” said Andrew Potts, federal leader of the Housing Affordability Party. “We know of so many cases now where landlords are evicting tenants, telling them they need the property for a relative, and then are advertising it for a much higher rent.


“We’ve heard heartbreaking stories of families forced to move into hotels, people having to move in with relatives or couch-surf to survive. With rents going up so much, there’s a hidden epidemic of homelessness now going on.”

The prospect of interest rates going up too later this year will make it even tougher for renters hoping to buy a property, but investors may be relieved that rising rents will help cover the bigger outlay on mortgages.

Emily Sim, CEO of property management with the Ray White Group, said, “The rent rises are wonderful for investors as if the interest rate goes up to 2 per cent or 2.5 per cent, rents are still rising faster, so they’ll be OK. But the other side of that is the cost-of-living argument. Renters can be anyone: property managers, real estate agents, landlords, employers, your family … and they are all affected.

“The real challenge is the housing supply. The latest report from the NHFIC [National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation] says there’s been a bottleneck in planning for new homes and growth in single-person households that have had an effect. The way we want to live is putting a strain on the housing supply too; we don’t want to share our homes.”

Ms Sim says that if she were a tenant having difficulties paying the big hikes in rents, she’d start thinking about her life plans and work out if she needed to be in a city or if she could live elsewhere. Communal living might be another option.

Dr Powell says some areas of cities are cheaper than others too, and units might offer a more affordable home than houses. Unit rents around the CBD in both Melbourne and Sydney, for instance, fell the most during COVID-19 and generally haven’t returned to pre-pandemic levels. Different cities in Australia also offer very different rental rates.

But it may even get worse before it gets better, Dr Powell says. “In Sydney, there’s a dynamic unravelling where strong selling conditions mean owners are selling before prices soften and then renting for a while before they buy again,” she said.

“This is also the first quarter where we’re starting to see the impacts of international borders coming down and the return of foreign students. That’s helping push up rental markets in cities, and as their numbers increase, that will create even stronger demand.”


Article Source:

from Queensland Property Investor

How to Create the Perfect Website for Your Real Estate Business

When it comes to marketing a business, building a quality website is crucial in making your brand stand out from the rest. Websites are a sales asset that companies and businesses work on to achieve better business outcomes. The real estate industry is already utilizing the power of the internet to increase its customer outreach and improve its sales. In this article, we will explore the components which are essential in making the perfect real estate website. So, stay informed and follow the required steps to achieve the best results. 

Defining The Purpose

Be clear about the purpose of your website which is to provide support, facilitate the customer, and sell your products or services. Leading real estate website developers suggest working on these essential aspects mentioned below to build a strong brand identity. 

  • Building credibility is essential to gaining the customer’s trust. The information you present on the website should be credible and make a lasting impression on the user. 
  • The functionality of your website should be top-notch. This will instill a positive feeling when the user is surfing the website and deliver a positive experience. 
  • The content provided should deliver value to the visitor and make your products and services sellable. 
  • Your website infrastructure should be advanced enough to be able to scale it up when necessary. Using an advanced framework eliminates the need for continuous IT support.

Now that we have covered the core aspects of the website you should cling to, let’s look at the steps to cover and the things to consider when building a real estate website. 

Finalizing Your Creative Outline

To make a website successful, you will need a website development team. Your creative outline is the roadmap that defines your project. The outline should enlist the set goals and briefly explain the areas that can influence the development of a website. Here is what the outline should include.

  • Brief background information detailing your goals, the expected challenges that might arise, and the relevant reports to support your decision.
  • Determine the type of audience your website will target and revamp your website according to their demands. 
  • Evaluate what your competitors are offering on their websites and provide content to differentiate your website from others. 
  • The tone and message you deliver through the website should be clear.
  • The photo and video content provided should be of top quality and great effort should be put into designing the content.  

Building a Real Estate Website

Hire a team of competent developers as the extensive codes, integrations, and complexities can only be handled by professionals. You only have to provide clear instructions on what you would most likely want on your website. These developers will also provide you with services for a specific time after the website is up just in case you want to modify or change a feature or function. 

You can also opt for a codeless website that doesn’t require you to hire a coder or a developer in building the website. There are several codeless platforms available that can easily be used by non-technical people. These codeless platforms offer a simple interface with tons of options to make a complex website. The websites made on codeless platforms provide top-notch functionality, have in-built integrations, the option to add on widgets, and tons of visual templates so you can get your website up and running within no time. 

Website Marketing

As soon as the website is up, your website marketing team can take over and start promoting the content for better business outcomes. Stay in touch with the marketing team to ensure that they completely understand your approach to the website. Over time, the marketing team will work on blogs and videos and update them regularly for better outreach. Furthermore, they promote your website using various mediums so the website can gain more leads and potential customers. 

A real estate website should work on the aspects mentioned below for better web marketing outcomes. 

  • Search engine optimization or SEO is a process that assists a website in climbing up the rankings of online search engines which ultimately improves the website viewership. You can review the requirements that various search engines have so it becomes easier for you to achieve effective results. 
  • Work on your landing page as you are aiming to make a strong first impression. Landing pages are crucial in marketing as they will be the page you want users to engage with while you promote your products or services. Most real estate websites have their listing as their landing page. 
  • Make sure your contact information is included and displayed prominently on the website such that it automatically shows up on every page the user visits. 
  • If you are utilizing the power of social media platforms to promote your business, consider adding these social media links to the website. Doing this increases the chances of the user interacting more through the provided social media channels. 

Working on The Design

Your real estate website should be visually appealing, provide a smooth user experience in terms of functionality, and provide user satisfaction. The real estate business is all about building a trustworthy brand identity and developing connections with clients. If you are targeting a local audience, use high-quality visual content to show them you are from their community and always ready to assist in real estate-related matters. Furthermore, the listings you upload should have images that portray the property from different angles and provide every single detail to inform the user. 

The interface design of your real estate website should appeal to the user and be simple enough for easy navigation. If you have built your website with the help of web developers, stay in touch with the web design team and make sure the content, colors, and overall outlook aligns with each other. Following up in the first place is crucial as it changes the visuals of a website after it takes a lot of time to modify. 

On the other hand, a codeless website uses visual templates and themes which can be easily swapped with another if you want to change it later on. There are tons of real estate investor website templates available; they can be used on codeless platforms without requiring any technical expertise or assistance. These templates not only provide a visually amazing feel to the website but also saves time in designing the style from scratch. 

Uploading Listings

Depending on your business requirements, work on your listings and try to provide a bit more information than your competitors do. Whether the listings are your own or belong to a fellow real estate agent, it’s important to review them since putting any property upon the listings will naturally gain traffic, ultimately increasing the chances of the displayed properties being sold even more quickly.

Recent Sales Section

As the real estate business is all about developing trust, add a section on your website where you can display the recent deals you facilitated between buyers and sellers. Doing this gives the user a positive impression and increases the traffic to your website. 

Virtual Tours

You can provide the user with a virtual tour by shooting a video of the property. However, remember to hire a professional videographer as a visually appealing video will most likely influence the user to make a deal. Virtual tours can also be provided on virtual reality platforms so the user can have an immersive experience and give positive feedback. 

About Section on Your Website

Work on your about us page and let the users know about you and your business. It is essential to provide at least some form of information so the visitor can get an idea of the products or services you are offering. It will be your personal choice how much information you add on the about us page. While some real estate brokers prefer providing comprehensive information, others choose to add only the contact information in the header or footer. Either way, it’s up to you to decide how you prefer to display the relevant information. 

Include Reviews

Reviews are a crucial component of a real estate website that facilitates building the credibility and brand identity of a business. Reviews have the potential to make or break a business. Several polls and surveys reveal that around 80% of users read online reviews of a local business before trusting them or making a decision. Therefore, reviews can have a huge impact on the outcomes of your real estate business. You can dedicate a separate page for reviews for a cleaner look, as it might not be possible to cram in reviews on other pages. 

Get Testimonials

If you are in the real estate industry for a long time, then you can understand the power of a testimonial. Whether you have sold a vintage property or a luxurious mansion, try getting a testimonial and display it on your real estate website to further solidify the brand impression. Testimonials from companies and businesses are also a plus if they don’t have an issue with displaying their identity on your website. 

Sign up Forms

Putting sign-up forms and subscription offers is an ideal way to capture potential leads from your real estate website. Using these services, you can send newsletters, important information regarding properties, and related tips to keep the user engaged. You can also offer specialized programs or work with a specific type of buyer or seller from your website by creating lead capture forms.

Including Details

Most buyers hesitate in buying a property if they are not clear on the terms and conditions. Likewise, sellers are entrusting their property so they need to make sure you, as a real estate agent, will market their property to the best of your abilities. Be upfront and provide all the information on how you will be promoting their property to instill trust. 

Include a FAQ Section

It’s natural for a buyer or seller to have questions in their mind when dealing with properties. Questions like the commission rates, the process of selling or buying the property, and a lot more will naturally come to their mind and should be answered accordingly. Depending on the real estate niche you are providing the services for, the questions can vary. Most questions are basic queries that can be addressed in the FAQs section of your website. Putting up these simple queries and answering them can save tons of time explaining them to the user.

Community Pages

The real estate agents targeting the market at a local level can include a community page on their website to provide community-based information. You can add information regarding the neighborhood, communities living in a specific area, or add community guides to assist buyers in making a decision. Providing authentic information about the neighborhood, their lifestyle, and the available attractions leaves a positive impact on the brand identity of your business. 

Working On Your Niche

The real estate industry has become highly competitive and aspiring real estate businesses find it hard to compete in this saturated market. To stand out from the rest of your competitors, it is crucial to provide offers that could catch the attention of the visitor. The best way is to work on your niche instead of dealing with just about any type of property. For example, if you want to provide services to industries, build your listings according to those particular requirements.  

Property Management

If your real estate agency offers property management, dedicate a page to the service on your website. You can provide this service to clients looking for property management solutions. Another great add-on you can apply to your website is the integration of home valuation. This service can be used by visitors so they can get an idea of how much they will be spending on different processes when buying or selling a property. 

property management

Anyone can build a real estate website, but only a few stand out; a lot of attention and detail must be put into it to get the best outcomes. We hope the information presented above could assist you while you work on developing your real estate website. To get the best results, always consider your requirements first and then set your strategy so your website doesn’t turn into an unintelligible mess.


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